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beautiful. It does not lie in an attitude, or in any peculiar expression, but in the general effect, in the genius which pervades and illuminates the whole. "The works of Rubers have that peculiar property always attendant on genius, to attract attention, and enforce admiration in spite of all their faults. It is owing to this fascinating power that the performances of those painters with which he is surrounded, though they have, perhaps, fewer defects, yet appear spiritless, tame, and insipid; such as the altar-pieces of Crayer, Schut, Segers, Huysum, Tyssens, Van Balen, and the rest. They are done by men whose hands, and, indeed, all their faculties, appear to have been cramped and confined; and it is evident that every thing they did was the effect of great labour and pains. The productions of Rubens, on the contrary, seem to flow with a freedom and prodigality, as if they cost him nothing; and to the general animation of the composition there is always a correspondent spirit in the execution of the work. The striking brilliancy of his colours, and their lively opposition to each other; the flowing liberty and freedom of his outline; the animated pencil with which every object is touched, all contribute to awaken and keep alive the attention of the spectator; awaken in him, in some measure, correspondent sensations, and make him feel a degree of that enthusiasm with which the painter was carried away. To this we may add the complete uniformity in all the parts of the work, so that the whole seems to be conducted and grow out of one mind: every thing is of a piece, and fits its place. Even his taste of drawing and of form appears to correspond better with his colouring and composition than if he had adopted any other manner, though that manner, simply considered, might have been better. It is here, as in personal attractions, there is frequently found a certain agreement and correspondence in the whole together, which is often more captivating than mere regular beauty.
"Rubens appears to have had that confidence in himself which it is necessary for every artist to assume when he has finished his studies, and may venture in some measure to throw aside the fetters of authority; to consider the rules as subject to his control, and not himself subject to the rules; to risk and to dare extraordinary attempts without a guide, abandoning himself to his own sensations, and depending upon them. To this confidence must be imputed that originality of manner by which he may be truly said to have extended the limits of the art. After Rubens had made up his manner, he never looked out of himself for assistance: there is, consequently, very little in his works that appears to be taken from other masters. If he has borrowed any thing, he has had the address to change and adapt it so well to the rest of his work that the thief is not discoverable.
"Besides the excellency of Rubens in these general powers, he possessed the true art of imitating. He saw the objects of nature with a painter's eye; he saw at once the predominant feature by which every object is known and distinguished and as soon as seen, it was executed with a facility that is astonishing: and, let me add, this facility is to a painter, when he closely examines a picture, a source of great pleasure. How far this excellence may be perceived or felt by those who are not painters, I know not to them certainly it is not enough that objects be truly represented; they must likewise be represented with grace, which means, here, that the work is done with facility and without effort. Rubens was, perhaps, the greatest master in the mechanical part of the art, the best workman with his tools, that ever exercised a pencil.
"This power, which Rubens possessed in the highest degree, enabled him to represent whatever he undertook better than any other painter. His animals, particularly lions and horses, are so admirable, that it may be said they were never properly represented but by him. His portraits rank with the best works of the painters who have made that branch of the art the sole business of their The same may be lives; and of these he has left a great variety of specimens.
said of his landscapes; and though Claude Lorraine finished more minutely, as becomes a professor in any particular branch, yet there is such an airiness and facility in the landscapes of Rubens, that a painter would as soon wish to be the author of them as those of Claude, or any other artist whatever.
"The pictures of Rubens have this effect on the spectator, that he feels himself in nowise disposed to pick out and dwell on his defects. The criticisms which are made on him are, indeed, often unreasonable. His style ought no
more to be blamed for not having the sublimity of Michael Angelo, than Ovid should be censured because he is not like Virgil.
"However, it must be acknowledged that he wanted many excellences which would have perfectly united with his style. Among those we may reckon beauty in his female characters; sometimes, indeed, they make approaches to it; they are healthy and comely women, but seldom, if ever, possess any degree of elegance the same may be said of his young men and children. His old men
have that sort of dignity which a bushy beard will confer; but he never possessed a poetical conception of character. In his representations of the highest characters in the Christian or the fabulous world, instead of something above humanity, which might fill the idea which is conceived of such beings, the spectator finds little more than mere mortals, such as he meets with every day. "The incorrectness of Rubens, in regard to his outline, oftener proceeds from haste and carelessness than from inability: there are in his great works to which he seems to have paid more particular attention, naked figures, as eminent for their drawing as for their colouring. He appears to have entertained a great abhorrence of the meagre, dry manner of his predecessors, the old German and Flemish painters; to avoid which, he kept his outline large and flowing this, carried to an extreme, produced that heaviness which is so frequently found in his figures. Another defect of this great painter is his inattention to the foldings of his drapery, especially that of his women; it is scarcely ever cast with any choice of skill. Carlo Maratti and Rubens are, in this respect, in opposite extremes: one discovers too much art in the disposition of drapery, and the other too little. Rubens's drapery, besides, is not properly historical; the quality of the stuff of which it is composed is too accurately distinguished, resembling the manner of Paul Veronese. This drapery is less offensive in Rubens, than it would be in many other painters, as it partly contributes to that richness which is the peculiar character of his style, which we do not pretend to set forth as of the most simple and sublime kind.
"The difference of the manner of Rubens from that of any other painter before him, is in nothing more distinguishable than in his colouring, which is totally different from that of Titian, Correggio, or any of the great colourists. The effect of his pictures may be not improperly compared to clusters of flowers: all his colours appear as clear and as beautiful; at the same time he has avoided that tawdry effect which one would expect such gay colours to produce; in this respect resembling Barocci more than any other painter. What was said of an ancient painter, may be applied to those two artists, that their figures look as if they fed upon roses.
"It would be a curious and a profitable study for a painter to examine the difference, and the cause of that difference, of effect in the works of Correggio and Rubens, both excellent in different ways. The difference, probably, would be given according to the different habits of the connoisseur: those who had received their first impressions from the works of Rubens would censure Correggio as heavy; and the admirers of Correggio would say Rubens wanted solidity of effect. There is lightness, airiness, and facility in Rubens, his advocates will urge, and comparatively a laborious heaviness in Correggio, whose admirers will complain of Rubens's manner being careless and unfinished, whilst the works of Correggio are wrought to the highest degree of delicacy; and what may be advanced in favour of Correggio's breadth of light, will, by his censurers,
be called affected and pedantic. It must be observed, that we are speaking solely of the manner, the effect of the picture; and we may conclude, according to the custom in pastoral poetry, by bestowing on each of these illustrious painters a garland, without attributing superiority to either.
"To conclude, - I will venture to repeat in favour of Rubens, what I have before said in regard to the Dutch school (§ 14.), that those who cannot see the extraordinary merit of this great painter, either have a narrow conception of the variety of art, or are led away by the affectation of approving nothing but what comes from the Italian school.". Sir Joshua Reynolds.
Belgium possesses at the present day a School of Living Painters, whose works have high claims to attention, and may be seen at the yearly exhibitions at Ghent, Antwerp, Brussels, as well as in the palaces, museums, and churches of the principal towns. The historical pictures of Wappers, de Keyzer, Biefve, Maes, Gallait, Brakelaer, the animals of Verboekhoven, the woody landscapes of Hellemans, are worthy of being placed by the side of the best productions of any existing school.
ROUTES THROUGH BELGIUM.
CALAIS TO BRUSSELS BY LILLE. RAIL
Many persons, especially in the winter season, prefer the shortest seavoyage between England and the continent, on which account the following route is given here. Besides which, Calais is now connected by railway with Brussels, and all the principal towns of Belgium.
CALAIS. Inn H. Dessin; good, but dear. The bed-room in which the author of the "Sentimental Journey" slept is still marked Sterne's Room; and that occupied by Sir Walter Scott is also ticketed with his respected name.- Quillac's Hotel; very good.Hôtel Meurice (no connection with the house of the same name at Paris); tolerably clean and good. The preference usually given to Boulogne has diminished the custom of the hotelkeepers, and they have sought to indemnify themselves by an increase of prices.
Duty on Carriages. Every carriage taken into France unaccompanied by a certificate of its being of French manufacture, is subject to a deposit of a third of its value; if the carriage is re-exported within 3 years, ths of the deposit is repaid: this repayment may
be obtained at any of the frontier cus-
Calais bas 12,508 inhabs.; it is a fortress of the 2nd class, situated in a most barren and unpicturesque district, with sandhills raised by the wind and
the sea on the one side, and morasses | XVIII. débarqua vis-à-vis de cette on the other, contributing considera- colonne, et fut enfin rendu à l'amour bly to its military strength, but by no des Francais; pour en perpétuer le means to the beauty of its position. souvenir, la ville de Calais a élevé ce Within the last few years it has been monument." "As an additional means re-fortified, and the strength of its works of perpetuating this remembrance, a greatly increased, especially to the sea- brazen plate had been let into the ward. An English traveller of the pavement, upon the precise spot where time of James I. described it as "a his foot first touched the soil. It was beggarly, extorting town; monstrous the left; and an English traveller nodear and sluttish." In the opinion of ticed it in his journal as a sinistrous many this description holds good down omen, that when Louis le Désiré, after to the present time. The harbour, his exile, stepped on France, he did lately improved and lengthened by 282 not put the right foot foremost." yards since 1830, is not so deep as that Quart. Rev. At the last revolution of Boulogne. Passengers must some- but one, viz. that of July, 1830, both times land in boats, and wait for their inscription and footmark were oblitebaggage until the steamer can enter. rated; and the pillar now stands a monument merely of the mutability of French opinions and dynasties.
Except to an Englishman setting his foot for the first time on the Continent, to whom every thing is novel, Calais has little that is remarkable to show. After an hour or two it becomes tiresome, and a traveller will do well to quit it as soon as he has cleared his baggage from the custom-house, and procured the signature of the police to his passport, which, if he be pressed for time, will be done almost at any hour of the day or night, so as not to delay his departure. It is necessary to be aware of this, as the commissionaires of the hotels will sometimes endeavour to detain a stranger, under pretence of not being able to get his passport signed. The owner of the passport must repair to the police-office himself
to have it visé.
Travellers landing at a French port, and not intending to go to Paris, but merely passing through the country, as on the route to Ostend or Brussels, are not compelled to exchange their passport for a passe provisoire, but merely require the visé of the authorities at Calais to allow them to proceed on their journey. Persons unprovided with a passport may procure one from the British Consul for 4s. 6d.
The Pier of Calais is an agreeable promenade, nearly mile long. It is decorated with a Pillar, raised to commemorate the return of Louis XVIII. to France, which originally bore this inscription:
"Le 24 Avril, 1814, S. M. Louis
The principal Gate leading from the sea-side into the town is that figured by Hogarth in his well-known picture. It was built by Cardinal Richelieu, 1635.
No one needs to be reminded of the interesting incidents of the Siege of Calais by Edward III., which lasted 11 months, and of the heroic devotion of Eustace de St. Pierre and his 5 companions. Few, however, are aware that the heroes of Calais not only went unrewarded by their own king and countrymen, but were compelled to beg their bread in misery through France. Calais remained in the hands of the English more than 200 years, from 1347 to 1558, when it was taken by the Duke de Guise. It was the last relic of the Gallic dominions of the Plantagenets, which, at one time, comprehended the half of France. Calais was dear to the English as the prize of the valour of their forefathers, rather than from any real value it pos
The English traveller should look at the Hôtel de Guise, originally the guildhall of the mayor and aldermen of the " Staple of Wool," established here by Edward III., 1363. It has many vestiges of English Tudor architecture. Henry VIII. used to lodge in it.
In the great Market Place stands the Hôtel de Ville (Town Hall). In it are
situated the Police Offices. In front
of it are placed busts of St. Pierre; of the Duc de Guise, surnamed le Balafré, who conquered the town from the English; and of the Cardinal de Richelieu, who built the citadel on the W. of the town; above it rises a belfry, containing the chimes. In the same square is a tower, which serves as a land-mark by day and a light-house by night, to point out to sailors the entrance of the harbour.
The principal Church was built at the time when the English were masters of Calais. It is a fine church, in the early Gothic style; a modern circular chapel has been thrown out behind the choir. It is surmounted by a stately tower and short steeple, which merit notice.
Lady Hamilton (Nelson's Emma) is buried in the public cemetery outside the town, on the road to Boulogne ; she died here in great misery.
The walls round the town, and the pier, are admirable promenades, and command a distinct view of the white cliffs of England, —a tantalising sight to the English exiles, fugitives from creditors or compelled from other causes to leave their homes; a numerous class both here and at Boulogne. There are many of our countrymen besides, who reside merely for the purpose of economising; so that the place is half Anglicised, and our language is generally spoken. The number of English residents in and about Calais amounted, before the French revolution of 1848,
to nearly 5000. There is an English chapel, Rue des Prêtres; service on Sundays, 11 A. M. and 3 P. M.
There is a small theatre here. Calais is one of those places where the fraternity of Couriers have a station. Travellers should be cautioned not to engage one unless the landlord of an hotel, or some other respectable and responsible person give him a character derived from personal knowledge; as many of these couriers remain at Calais only because some previous act of misconduct prevents them showing their faces on the opposite side of the Channel. The inn-yards are generally well stocked with carriages
to be let or sold; they are mostly old and rickety vehicles, and the hire demanded for them nearly equals that for which an excellent carriage may be obtained in London.
Steamboats go twice every day to Dover, varying their departure to suit the time of high water. The new English steamers usually make the voyage in about two hours. Steamers go direct to London, several times a week, in 10 or 12 hours.
Calais to Brussels.
In going from Calais to Brussels, the traveller, on leaving Lille, may proceed by railway to Brussels, either (1) by Douai, Valenciennes, Mons, and Braine le Comte; or (2) by Courtrai, Ghent, and Mechlin; or (3) by TourThe nay, Ath, and Braine le Comte. distance from Calais to Lille is 104 kilomètres 65 miles. From Lille to Brussels the distance is, by route (1), 162 kilom., or 101 miles; by route (2) 150 kilom., or 933 miles; and by route (3) 134 kilom., or 84 miles.